Hip Lift Exercises for a Better Butt

Hip Lift Exercises for a Better Butt

There are an almost overwhelming number of exercises you can do to work your butt. Variations of squats and lunges are popular go-to options, but you definitely don’t want to forget about one grouping of booty-building exercises: hip ups.

These kinds of exercises (also known as hip lift exercises) work to target your glutes so you can make your booty look great and enjoy all the other non-esthetic benefits of a strong butt.

For example, many of us have what’s known as gluteal amnesia from sitting a vast majority of our day (thanks, 9-to-5 desk job). This makes our glutes weak, and can cause lower back pain and pelvic instability.

To fight “sleepy butt syndrome” and sculpt an enviable booty, try adding some hip up exercises into your workout routine.

 

What Are Hip Ups

This kind of exercise is anything that targets your glutes by lifting up your hips, whether you’re doing it from laying on your back or propped up on your side.

“Hip lift exercises are the perfect way to target your glutes,” says Austin Kallai, NASM-certified fitness and group exercise instructor. “These types of exercises work your glutes in isolation, without other muscles — such as your quads — taking over. If you have a hard time activating your glutes or simply want to strengthen them, hip lift exercises are the perfect way to target them.”

 

Hip Lift Exercises to Build Your Butt

Check out these hip up exercises to build your hip lift workout and tone your booty.

 

1. Glute Bridge

Glute Bridge - Lower Body Workout

The classic glute bridge is the perfect hip lift exercise to target your glutes — after all, it’s in the name!

  • Lie on your back with your legs bent, feet flat on the ground about hip-width distance apart. Place your hands at your sides, palms to the floor. You should be able to just reach your heels with your fingertips. This is your starting position.
  • Engage your abs, squeeze your glutes, and press your feet into the ground to lift your hips. Your body should forms a straight line from your knees to your shoulders.
  • Keep your head in a neutral position, eyes gazing toward the ceiling, and the back of your head on the floor.
  • Hold for a beat and then lower your hips back to the floor. Repeat.

2. Single-Leg Glute Bridge

By lifting one leg, you introduce instability to this exercise, which will push you to increase your core engagement to maintain balance.

  • Set up in a traditional glute bride starting position.
  • Extend your right leg out straight, lifted so your thighs and knees are parallel.
  • Engage your abs, squeeze your glutes, and press into your left foot to lift your hips up. Your body should forms a straight line from your right foot to your shoulders.
  • Pulse your hips up and down without allowing your hips to touch the floor. Keep your hips flat throughout the movement.
  • Complete your reps, and then lower down to the floor and switch legs. Do equal reps on both legs.

 

3. Banded Glute Bridge March

hip workouts exercises | glute bridge march

Add movement and instability to further challenge your core and balance. Placing a band around your thighs will also make your outer thighs work even harder to prevent your knees from caving in.

  • Set up in a traditional glute bride starting position with a band looped around the middle of your thighs.
  • Engage your abs, squeeze your glutes, and lift your hips and drive your right knee up and back.
  • Lower your hips and your right foot back down to the floor.
  • Repeat with your left leg.
  • Continue marching, alternating sides.

 

4. Single-Leg Elevated Hip Raise

woman performing a single leg elevated hip raise

This is a slightly easier version of other hip up exercises. Because one foot is elevated, you don’t have to raise your hips as high as you do if your feet were on the ground. But that doesn’t mean it’s easy — focus on your form and you’ll still feel this in your glutes!

  • Lie on your back, with your hands at your sides, palms on the floor. Bend your right leg to place your right foot on a bench (or other immovable object), and bend your left leg to hover your left foot above the bench.
  • Squeeze your glutes and press into your right foot to lift your hips up until your body forms a straight line from your right knee to your shoulders.
  • Pause for a moment, then return to the starting position.
  • Do equal reps on both legs.

 

5. Side Plank Hip Lift

hip workouts exercises | side plank hip lift

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

This hip lift exercise requires glute and core activation to stabilize your hips. You’ll really feel the burn in your obliques!

  • Lie on your right side with your legs extended and feet stacked, propping yourself up onto your right forearm. Place your left hand on your left hip.
  • Lift your hips up to the ceiling, then slowly lower them without touching the floor.
  • Keep your hips pointed straight forward throughout the movement.
  • Complete all reps, then switch sides and repeat. Perform equal reps on each side.

 

6. Weighted Side Plank Hip Lift

side plank hip lift dumbbell weighted

For a harder variation on the classic side plank hip lift, you can add weight into the equation.

  • Set up for a traditional side plank, propping yourself on your right forearm. Hold a dumbbell with your left hand, and rest it on your left hip.
  • Lift your hips up to the ceiling, then slowly lower them without touching the floor, engaging your core to keep your hips pointing forward.
  • Complete all reps, then switch sides and repeat. Perform equal reps on each side.
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After grabbing her journalism degree from the University of Oklahoma, Page hopped a plane to backpack through Europe. She was hooked. To sustain her travel habit, Page is a freelance writer, editor, author, and RYT 500 through Yoga Alliance. When not in Austin, Texas fostering kittens, you can find Page traveling the world, scuba diving, hiking, visiting museums, and sampling the local cuisine. Follow her on Twitter.